“Constantly talking isn’t necessarily communicating.”
– Charlie Kaufman
Read that again. While we could drop the mic and walk away with sharing that statement, we have some thoughts to add.
All the web content you publish should have one purpose: to communicate to your audience. Creating content for the sake of doing so won’t benefit either you or them—it’ll just add the incessant noise out there on the Internet and will wind up being a waste of time to create it or read it.
The solution? Understanding who you’re talking to—your ideal customer—and creating content that fits their unique needs. The only way to do this is to create an ideal customer avatar (ICA) or customer persona and use it.
Creating Your ICA Is Only the First Step
A few months ago, we wrote a blog post, All About Personas: Why and How to Create Them, to help you create your own customer avatar. But creating your ICA is only the first step. Now, you should focus on putting your ICA to good use. Here’s why:
- The use of marketing personas makes websites 2-5 times more effective.
- Around 48% of customers are more likely to consider businesses that personalize their marketing to address their specific issues.
- Around 71% of companies who exceed their revenue goals have documented personas. Coincidence? We think not.
How to Use Your Ideal Customer Avatar
If you don’t have an ICA, now’s the time to create one. Go ahead and check out that blog post linked above, follow the steps and then come on back to this post. We’ll wait right here.
If you do have an ICA, it’s time to put it to good use.
Using Your ICA to Create Content Based on the Customer Journey
Not every customer who visits your website or blog is ready to buy. You must create content that fits every stage of the customer journey; you can do so by using your ICA.
Mapping the Process
Using your ICA, take some time to map their buying journey. Start by identifying the stages they experience throughout the process, from the initial outset of their situation through to seeking out services through to wrapping up their work with you. Also identify their needs, thoughts and actions during each stage.
For example, during the awareness stage, your customer will be searching for a solution to a problem. How do they feel during that stage? What do they need during that stage? What actions will they need to take?
Building a Content Strategy
Now, based on your persona’s journey, you can create a strategy that includes content for each stage. For example, you may choose to create a downloadable guide for the awareness stage and an email marketing campaign for the consideration stage.
The trick is to use your persona to recognize your customer’s wants, needs, fears, preferences and more. Only then can you create content that truly speaks their language.
Don’t Forget to Share & Update Your ICA
If your business includes employees, contractors, freelancers or anyone else that may communicate with your customers, share your ICA with them. Make sure they have a good understanding of who you serve. With every new individual you add to your team, make it a priority to share the ICA.
Your ICA should guide all forms of communication in your business (not just content).
It’s also important to remember that your ICA is a living, breathing document. It should be updated as often as your business changes. Did you recently add new services? Did you shift your business focus? It’s time to review your ICA and make any necessary changes.
Who Are You Talking to Online?
Does your website content speak to your target customer? If not, you’re missing out on valuable leads for your business. To learn more about creating content that speaks to your unique audience, send us a message.